MENTORS

Eric Avery

Eric Avery is a Ngiyampaa, Yuin, Bandjalang and Gumbangirri Musician (violin) and Dancer. Eric has studied at NAISDA, Australian Institute of Music, completed a mentorship at the Australian Ballet and has engaged with Marrugeku Dance Theatre for 5 years attending their Indigilab Program, dancing in Cut The Sky (co choreographed by Serge Alime Coulibaly and Dalisa Pigram) and has recently developed a solo work 'Dancing With Strangers' with Belgian Choreographer Koen Augustijnen. Eric has performed with the Black Arm Band, opened for Rhiannon Giddens for her Australian Performances at the Factory Theatre, Newtown. Eric regularly plays violin with his Father Graham King (Yidaki/ Didgeridoo) recently performing at Boomerang-Byron Bay Bluesfest 2018. He recently headlined at the National Indigenous Music Awards and plays the Syndey Folk Festival in August 2019.

Kim Beamish

Awarded Canberra Artist of the Year 2018 Kim has established himself as one of ACT’s and Australia’s award winning filmmakers and a consistent documentary storyteller. His film ‘The Tentmakers of Cairo’ filmed over the duration of the Arab Spring and Egypt’s revolution won the Margaret Mead Filmmaker Award, Prix Buyen-Chagoll and the Man Ray Award for Excellence. Kim’s next film OYSTER screened successfully at the Sydney Film Festival along with winning Best Environmental Feature Film at the Chesapeake Film Festival in the USA. His film about Van Nguyen’s 2006 execution in Singapore, ‘Just Punishment’, helped in changing the mandatory death penalty laws in Singapore. Kim’s films are intimate, personal films which bring the audience into situations as though they are there. As cinematographer Kim is able to stay close to his characters and spend time building trust. His time in Egypt saw him build close relationships with a small community of devout Muslim artists. Whilst on his film OYSTER he lived with and filmed close to a family of oyster farmers as they worked their farm through all weather conditions. Kim lives in the Canberra, Australia where he runs his production company Non’D’Script and lives with his wive and two kids.

Debora di Centa

Debora Di Centa is a Canberra based independent dance artist and choreographer. Debora grew up in Italy and started dancing at a young age. She has extensive training in ballet, jazz, contemporary dance and she is an expert in LabanMovement Analysis . Debora studied and collaborated in dance works, research, and performances with variousartists  and dance specialists around Europe, US and Asia. Debora is currently pursuing her professional development around Australia, New Zealand and internationally. She teaches, performs, choreographs, and directs dance events working for professionals and in community settings. Since 2016 Debora is leading the Canberra Contact Improvisation community and is team member of the Dance For Well Being program at Belconnen Arts Centre. She trainspre-professional Contemporary dancers at Dance Development Center Canberra and collaborates with Independent Artist Liz Lea, Canberra Dance Theatre, Praksis Canberra and Ausdance ACT. As independent  she works through her label ISEMS PROJECTS.  

Jake Kuzma

Jake Kuzma is a locally grown Canberran dancer. Contemporary, floor work and urban movement are at the core of his dance style. His passion for contemporary dance began when he joined QL2 in his early teens. After graduating from Queensland University of Technology (QUT) in 2011 with a Bachelor of Dance performance, he began a career in teaching, choreographing and performing. Claire Marshall’s Slowdive, Antony Hamilton Black Project 2, and Cadi McCarthy That Place in Between are the shows that were highlights of Jake’s performing career and the choreographers that contributed the most towards his dance practice. Jake’s youth dance company experience is vast, working for QL2, Yellow Wheel, Flipside and Drill. From juniors up to Bangarra Dance Theatre company class, Jake has taught a wide range of dance levels. International success came from performing in Montreal CINARS festival for Antony Hamilton, being a guest teacher in China at the Dong Guan Dancesport 2018 Summer Camp and as a performer in Chengdu for the BLAH BLAH BLAH #004 festival. In the past year Jake has returned to the Canberra dance scene through teaching various classes with GOLD dance company and a guest artist for The Canberra Youth Dance Festival. 2020 already has projects lined up with QL2, Canberra Youth Theatre and Ausdance ACT.

Liz Lea

Liz Lea is a performer, choreographer and producer based in Canberra after 20 years in Europe, touring internationally. Her speciality is working with classical Indian dance and martial arts. Shehas worked with Ranjabati Sircar, Mavin Khoo, the Royal Opera House and English Bach Festival and been commissioned in India, UK, Australia, South Africa, Singapore and USA. Liz was named a 2018 ACT Dance Artist of the Year and in 2017 was the ACT Artist of the Year and was also awarded a 2017 Australian Dance Award for her direction of Great Sport! at the National Museum of Australia. Liz was the Artistic Director of Canberra Dance Theatre for 6 years andruns two Festivals - BOLD, celebrating the legacy of dance and the DANscienCE where dance and science meet. Liz has presented two TEDx performance talks and recently she premiered her new one woman show, RED, to critical acclaim and is touring through 2020. She is a member of the inaugural ACT Minister’s Creative Council an 2019 Asialink Resident with Singapore's Maya Dance Theatre and Ausdance ACT's Creative Director.

Caroline 'Leena' Wall

Caroline ‘Leena’ Wall is the Artistic Director of Fresh Funk, Canberra’s original and leading urban dance program, part of the Tuggeranong Arts Centre. Leena has been dancing and performing for over 25 years. She has a background in classical ballet, jazz and contemporary dance, and was the first to introduce “urban” dance to Canberra, with Fresh Funk offering a fusion of hip-hop, street funk and contemporary dance since its inception in 2000. Leena has completed an Honours degree in English and Theatre Studies at the ANU as well as her professional Certification in Dance Teaching and Safe Dance Practices from Queensland University of Technology. She has travelled interstate and internationally as a dancer and teacher, training annually in Los Angeles with the biggest names in the urban dance world, such as Matt Steffanina, Willdabeast, Andre Fuentes, and Kyle Hanagami. Leena also has a long history of involvement with Ausdance, the Australian Choreographic Centre, and Quantum Leap Youth Dance Ensemble. She is an award-winning dancer and tutor, who was nominated for Young Australian of the Year. She is dedicated to providing a supportive and positive experience for dancers, and to her teaching and mentoring. 

Jamie Winbank

Jamie Winbank is a dance and theatre creator, director, performer, producer, and educator based in Sydney. Some performance credits include Opera Australia's Handa on Sydney Harbour "West Side Story", Meryl Tankard's "VX18504", "Wicked" Free Rain Theatre/Canberra Theatre Centre, Brown Paper Circus' "Please Consider Our Neighbours"; and residencies with Frantic Assembly (London) and Les Ballets C De La B (Ghent, Belgium). 

 

Jamie is a passionate youth arts practitioner having directed "Versions of Us" for Canberra Youth Theatre, as the Creative Director & Choreographic Mentor for Ausdance ACT’s Youth Dance Festival (2015-2019), co-presented a “Boys In Dance” presentation/workshop at the Commonwealth Youth Dance Festival (Glasgow) with Ruth Osborne, and worked in an array of roles for QL2 Dance/Quantum Leap Youth Ensemble including as Assistant to the Artistic Director, Choreographer and Project Manager. Jamie is currently a Sydney Dance Company Teaching Artist and Virtual Studios Teaching Artist, and is creator of The Social disDANCE Project - an online space for dancers to connect and create during the COVID19 pandemic. 

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